112 S. 24th St. Tacoma, 98402
How and when did your store start up?
We have four stores in Washington and growing. Our store in downtown Tacoma was our first, which opened in June 2014.
What’s the story behind the name of your store?
Honestly, web domain availability dictated our store name. We simply did a bulk search on 100 ideas, and of the search results that were available, Urban Bud felt right, it sounded relatable. So we went with it.
What does your store offer customers/patients that they can’t find anywhere else?
Cannabis retail is a hyper competitive industry. At Urban Bud, we believe in doing common things uncommonly well. Customer service is a great example. When a customer comes in our store, we don’t just greet them, we share a contagious enthusiasm for our store experience. Our goal is to connect and engage with every customer, which hopefully results in them becoming an advocate of our store to their personal networks. Our menus are all managed in real-time through our website with cool sorting functions like potency and price, all of which is optimized for your smart phone web browser. Inside our stores, customers use an interactive iPad menu. In 2017 we’re introducing online pre-orders, a new VIP Club, opening more stores, and we’re pioneering a new gamified customer experience (first of its kind).
How has the cannabis industry changed since you have been in the business? Where would you like to see it go?
Cannabis has become fastest growing sector in the U.S. economy. Because it’s a new frontier for business, it’s exciting to see so many new products and categories regularly introduced. The diversity of our product selection grows on a weekly basis. As for the direction of the industry, it will be interesting to see how long it takes for the corporate conglomerates to take over all the shops and create national chains. Whether we like it or not, this is the inevitable evolution of all new industries. As the industry grows, we can only hope the state’s taxable revenue will be redirected towards meaningful initiatives like education—who wouldn’t support that?
What is the one thing you want customers/patients to know about your store?
Simply put, we’re more than just a weed store. We’re an organization of people who are passionate about our responsibility of consistently delivering a rich customer experience. It’s our goal to connect with every customer and ensure they leave our stores excited about the quality and value of their purchase.
If someone wanted to open a store and get their feet wet in the industry, what advice or counsel would you give them?
It really depends on which avenue you pursue. There’s obviously different risk profiles for retail, growing, processing, etc. Because every aspect of the industry is hyper competitive, building out the right internal capabilities to manage your business is important. No one can afford to learn along the way. Also with great internal capabilities, you have to also be able to adapt quickly to the changes, whether it’s regulation or product trends.